Alnwick Castle in Northumberland is the second largest inhabited castle in England after Windsor Castle, and has been home to the Percy family for more than seven centuries.

The castle’s vibrant history and breath taking architecture make it the ideal location for filming, and it has featured in numerous television dramas and films. These include Downton Abbey, The Hollow Crown, Robin Hood Prince of Thieves, and most notably as Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the first two Harry Potter films.

The Guest Hall is a spectacular Grade II listed banqueting hall that is used for events such as weddings and corporate hire, and recently underwent a comprehensive refurbishment.

Michael Grubb Studio was appointed to develop a lighting scheme that would enhance the historic character of the space whilst providing flexibility for events and private hire.

Working closely with interior architects Ward Robinson, they developed a lighting philosophy for the project based on using white light to enhance both original and more modern features within the space.

Architectural lighting for the bar and balcony areas is provided by more than 60 linear luminaires. These use LED Linear VarioLED Flex Hydra HD10 IP67 flexible lines of light, which are water and UV resistant, and available in lengths of up to 5m. The front of the bar is illuminated using luminaires that have been recessed into its top, and the antique balcony panels are fitted with luminaires that are mounted around its base.

Although the main lighting scheme uses white light, events such as wedding receptions and corporate events often want to incorporate an element of coloured lighting. To accommodate this, LED Linear VarioLED Flex RGB HD20 is discretely incorporated into the window recesses, and up lights the features of each window. This flexible LED tape uses highest quality Japanese RGB LEDs, and produces atmospheric light and colour accents for a wide range of applications.

As the Guest Hall is used for a wide range of events, the client required a control solution that could create different ambiences and moods with ease. All lighting in the Great Hall is controlled by a Philips Dynalite solution supplied and commissioned by Architainment, and a DTP100 colour LCD touchscreen allows castle staff to create and recall different lighting scenes from it’s simple, easy to use interface.

Photography: Kristen McCluskie

www.architainment.co.uk